The Fate of Their Country

The Fate of Their Country

Politicians, Slavery Extension, and the Coming of the Civil War

Book - 2004
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Baker & Taylor
Arguing that partisan politics ultimately caused the Civil War, the author paints a portrait of short-sighted politicos during the 1840s and 1850s using the slavery issue as political leverage in a variety of contests between the major parties.

McMillan Palgrave
How partisan politics lead to the Civil War

What brought about the Civil War? Leading historian Michael F. Holt convincingly offers a disturbingly contemporary answer: partisan politics. In this brilliant and succinct book, Holt distills a lifetime of scholarship to demonstrate that secession and war did not arise from two irreconcilable economies any more than from moral objections to slavery. Short-sighted politicians were to blame. Rarely looking beyond the next election, the two dominant political parties used the emotionally charged and largely chimerical issue of slavery's extension westward to pursue reelection and settle political scores, all the while inexorably dragging the nation towards disunion.

Despite the majority opinion (held in both the North and South) that slavery could never flourish in the areas that sparked the most contention from 1845 to 1861-the Mexican Cession, Oregon, and Kansas-politicians in Washington, especially members of Congress, realized the partisan value of the issue and acted on short-term political calculations with minimal regard for sectional comity. War was the result.

Including select speeches by Lincoln and others, The Fate of Their Country openly challenges us to rethink a seminal moment in America's history.


Blackwell North Amer
What brought about the Civil War? Leading historian Michael F. Holt offers a disturbingly contemporary answer: partisan politics. In this book, Holt demonstrates that secession and war did not arise from two irreconcilable economies any more than from moral objections to slavery: short-sighted politicians were to blame. Rarely looking beyond the next election, the dominant political parties used the emotionally charged and largely chimerical issue of slavery's extension westward to pursue the election of their candidates and settle political scores, all the while inexorably dragging the nation toward disunion.
Despite the majority opinion (held in both the North and South) that slavery could never flourish in the areas that sparked the most contention from 1845 to 1861 - the Mexican Cession, Oregon, and Kansas - politicians in Washington, especially members of Congress, realized the partisan value of the issue and acted on short-term political calculations with minimal regard for sectional comity. War was the result.
Complete with a brief appendix of excerpted writings by Lincoln and others, The Fate of Their Country openly challenges us to rethink a seminal moment in America's history.

Publisher: New York : Hill and Wang, 2004
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9780809095186
0809095181
Branch Call Number: 973.711 H742f
Characteristics: xiv, 168 p. : maps ; 22 cm

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